Opinion  

Ombudsman is already powerful enough

In response to the story ‘Apply high court time-bar ruling to IFAs: Apfa’ (FA 12 March), let us consider why Fos was conceived.

It was intended as a quick method of resolving disputes – but it can take three years or more for these disputes to be finalised.

It is a body that can get to the heart of the matter – “We don’t have to look for the law, we unashamedly make new law,” stated ex-chief ombudsman Walter Merricks.

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It is a body that uses ‘the balance of probabilities’ as the determinant for resolving issues that can end up awarding £150,000.

It is a body which is able to ignore the law and also ignore the precepts of SI2326, which was introduced to stop retrospection.

I have it on good authority from an ex-head of the Law Society that the ECHR would quash this particular piece of misguided consumerism. It is not only unlawful but also against fairness and common sense. The sooner the FCA and the government recognise this the better.

Alan Lakey

Partner, Highclere Financial Services, Herts